Whatever’s happening in the world, dating trends just keep on coming.
Not even lockdown can stop us finding new ways to make the art of seeking love more complicated, whether in the form of curfing or lockblocking.
So yes, with the ongoing coronavirus pandemic come even more dating trends, reflective of the general mood of 2020.
The good news, though, is that rather than letting this cursed year get us down in the dumps or giving up on love entirely, living through Covid appears to have given us all a kick up the bum when it comes to the pursuit of dating joy.
As a result, one of the key trends that’s emerging now and will, Badoo predicts, be big next year too, is the rise of carpe dm-ers.
What are carpe dm-ers, you may ask?
They’re the singles who have reflected on these troubled times and realise they need to seize the day – so are diving right into messaging and wasting no time with all the ‘does this person secretly fancy me?’ preamble.
This year, the top conversation starter on Badoo has been: ‘how about we arrange a date?’. These days we’re getting straight to the point, as we’ve realised just how precious our time is. Who knows when we’ll go back into lockdown and be unable to date with wild abandon?
On the flip-side of that need for speed is the trend for hiberdating; defined as using lockdown to lay the groundwork for dating post-coronavirus.
This is pretty smart. Hiberdaters will use their lockdown time to its full potential, building up the talking stage and planning dates for when restrictions lift. A far better option than just giving up on romance entirely when we’re cooped up indoors.
Other trends Badoo reckons are growing due to the pandemic in include getting sexy online (after all, if we can’t have sex IRL, we might as well enjoy the virtual kind), comfort dating (dropping the pretense and being your natural self, because who can be bothered nowadays?), and the rise of video calls and voice notes rather than just sticking to texting.
Badoo’s dating trend predictions for 2021:
- Hiberdating: Using lockdown to lay the groundwork for future romance, whether that’s finding a match in time for lockdown easing, scheduling in a date far in advance, or focusing on the talking stage while we can’t meet IRL.
- Carpe dm-ers: No-nonsense daters who have thought more seriously about what they want and are no longer wasting any time, instead diving straight in and being clear about their intentions.
- Flirty talk: 45% of Badoo users believe people will continue to have more virtual first dates, while phone calls and voice notes are rising in popularity.
- Getting off, online: Daters are getting dirty virtually before they’ve actually met.
- Comfort dating: Zoom dates necessitate inviting someone to see your home straight away, and allow you to dress for comfort rather than for a fancy restaurant. During the pandemic, 61% of users said that their dating behaviour had changed, with half of these users (47%) suggesting they are now less concerned with looks, prioritising personality over physicality.
Natasha Briefel at Badoo UK said: ‘It’s been a completely unpredictable year in the world of dating.
‘Daters have had to navigate the ups and downs of trying to date while in the midst of a global pandemic, but despite the challenges, we’ve been inspired by the way our daters have continued to connect with each other.
‘From the creation of new dating seasons informed by lockdown restrictions, to a move towards more video calls over texts, we’ve looked at the different dating behaviours from this year to give us some insight into what 2021 may hold.
‘Although no one knows for certain what the next year may bring, one thing we can confidently predict is that our daters will continue to date honestly whatever challenges they face.’
Dating terms and trends, defined
Blue-stalling: When two people are dating and acting like a couple, but one person in the partnership states they’re unready for any sort of label or commitment (despite acting in a different manner).
Breadcrumbing: Leaving ‘breadcrumbs’ of interest – random noncommittal messages and notifications that seem to lead on forever, but don’t actually end up taking you anywhere worthwhile Breadcrumbing is all about piquing someone’s interest without the payoff of a date or a relationship.
Caspering: Being a friendly ghost – meaning yes, you ghost, but you offer an explanation beforehand. Caspering is all about being a nice human being with common decency. A novel idea.
Catfish: Someone who uses a fake identity to lure dates online.
Clearing: Clearing season happens in January. It’s when we’re so miserable thanks to Christmas being over, the cold weather, and general seasonal dreariness, that we will hook up with anyone just so we don’t feel completely unattractive. You might bang an ex, or give that creepy guy who you don’t really fancy a chance, or put up with truly awful sex just so you can feel human touch. It’s a tough time. Stay strong.
Cloutlighting: Cloutlighting is the combo of gaslighting and chasing social media clout. Someone will bait the person they’re dating on camera with the intention of getting them upset or angry, or making them look stupid, then share the video for everyone to laugh at.
Cockfishing: Also known as catcocking. When someone sending dick pics uses photo editing software or other methods to change the look of their penis, usually making it look bigger than it really is.
Cuffing season: The chilly autumn and winter months when you are struck by a desire to be coupled up, or cuffed.
Firedooring: Being firedoored is when the access is entirely on one side, so you’re always waiting for them to call or text and your efforts are shot down.
Fishing: When someone will send out messages to a bunch of people to see who’d be interested in hooking up, wait to see who responds, then take their pick of who they want to get with. It’s called fishing because the fisher loads up on bait, waits for one fish to bite, then ignores all the others.
Flashpanner: Someone who’s addicted to that warm, fuzzy, and exciting start bit of a relationship, but can’t handle the hard bits that might come after – such as having to make a firm commitment, or meeting their parents, or posting an Instagram photo with them captioned as ‘this one’.
Freckling: Freckling is when someone pops into your dating life when the weather’s nice… and then vanishes once it’s a little chillier.
Gatsbying: To post a video, picture or selfie to public social media purely for a love interest to see it.
Ghosting: Cutting off all communication without explanation.
Grande-ing: Being grateful, rather than resentful, for your exes, just like Ariana Grande.
Hatfishing: When someone who looks better when wearing a hat has pics on their dating profile that exclusively show them wearing hats.
Kittenfishing: Using images that are of you, but are flattering to a point that it might be deceptive. So using really old or heavily edited photos, for example. Kittenfishes can also wildly exaggerate their height, age, interests, or accomplishments.
Lovebombing: Showering someone with attention, gifts, gestures of affection, and promises for your future relationship, only to distract them from your not-so-great bits. In extreme cases this can form the basis for an abusive relationship.
Microcheating: Cheating without physically crossing the line. So stuff like emotional cheating, sexting, confiding in someone other than your partner, that sort of thing.
Mountaineering: Reaching for people who might be out of your league, or reaching for the absolute top of the mountain.
Obligaswiping: The act of endlessly swiping on dating apps and flirt-chatting away with no legitimate intention of meeting up, so you can tell yourself you’re doing *something* to put yourself out there.
Orbiting: The act of watching someone’s Instagram stories or liking their tweets or generally staying in their ‘orbit’ after a breakup.
Paperclipping: When someone sporadically pops up to remind you of their existence, to prevent you from ever fully moving on.
Preating: Pre-cheating – laying the groundwork and putting out feelers for cheating, by sending flirty messages or getting closer to a work crush.
Prowling: Going hot and cold when it comes to expressing romantic interest.
R-bombing: Not responding to your messages but reading them all, so you see the ‘delivered’ and ‘read’ signs and feel like throwing your phone across the room.
Scroogeing: Dumping someone right before Christmas so you don’t have to buy them a present.
Shadowing: Posing with a hot friend in all your dating app photos, knowing people will assume you’re the attractive one and will be too polite to ask.
Shaveducking: Feeling deeply confused over whether you’re really attracted to a person or if they just have great facial hair.
Sneating:When you go on dates just for a free meal.
Stashing: The act of hiding someone you’re dating from your friends, family, and social media.
Submarineing: When someone ghosts, then suddenly returns and acts like nothing happened.
V-lationshipping:When someone you used to date reappears just around Valentine’s Day, usually out of loneliness and desperation.
You-turning: Falling head over heels for someone, only to suddenly change your mind and dip.
Zombieing: Ghosting then returning from the dead. Different from submarineing because at least a zombie will acknowledge their distance.
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